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Only gold in London will do: Willis
Tom Wald
05:40 AEST Sun Jul 15 2012

Beijing Olympic silver medallist Nick Willis says he must go one better in the 1500m at the London Games to match his unforgettable experience in 2008.

The New Zealand middle distance runner stepped up his preparations for the quadrennial sporting extravaganza with a fourth placing in the mile at the Diamond League meet in south London.

"I would love to experience the joy and jubilation that I experienced in Beijing but I feel like the only way I will get that taste is if I win gold," he told NZN.

"Winning a minor medal would still be great but no matter how hard I might try, I won't feel that same sort of joy.

"I would really love to feel that again."

The 29-year-old US-based athlete is experimenting with a more aggressive approach to racing but he took it to an almost extreme level at Crystal Palace by bursting out to a big lead in the wet conditions.

Willis (3min 53.64sec) delighted the English crowd by taking a 40m lead into the final lap on Saturday before being swamped with 100m to go with Kenyan Silas Kiplagat (3:52.44) emerging victorious.

"I definitely want to be more aggressive than I have been, to put myself in a position where I am a chance to win more races," he said.

"That does not mean you have to be in the lead from the beginning but I am trying to put into races the good training that I have done.

"I am the fittest of my life, it would be foolish not to see how far that I can go in terms of times."

The 2006 Commonwealth Games champion was looking forward to stretching his legs in Monaco next weekend before the opening round of the 1500m at the Olympics on August 3.

Willis set his personal best time of 3:31.79 in the principality just under 12 months ago.

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